So now that you have planned your dream Safari in Africa vacation and almost all the preparations are set and in place, what’s the next agenda??
Safety, is it?? You do not want to fall into a situation where you are scared, confused and left in the dark… Just remember childhood experiences of being left in the dark, the disturbing feeling you got was a fear of the unknown, and being unprepared sets you up to go through the very same thing all over again!
So keep these tips in mind at all times:
Documents and money
- Make sure to have a photocopy of your passport and required visas on you at all times.
- Be sure to make a list of your traveler’s cheque numbers and do pack it separately from the originals.
- Don’t ever carry large amounts of cash on your person; especially since credit cards are widely accepted and welcome.
- And if you need cash at hand to purchase souvenirs and other things at local markets – keep it safely in a special travel wallet or a hidden zip pocket.
The wildlife is only safe at a distance
- All the animals you find in the African bushes are quite capable of protecting themselves. And if at any time they feel threatened, they might attack. So always keep a guide with you and don’t get too close for comfort.
- Don’t forget to pack your camera properly in the right camera bag. You don’t want it to get damaged.
- Also make sure you do not leave it lying around.
- It is also advisable to not openly display it when in urban areas.
- There are a number of different illnesses that can plague travelers in Africa if they are not careful enough. So take the right precautions, and do not miss out on the vaccinations that you should take earlier.
- It is a forest for heaven’s sake! And no forest is complete without the creepies! Expect to find insects and reptiles of all description here – snakes, scorpions, lizards, spiders etc.
- Taking a few precautions won’t be a bad idea. Carry good covered shoes with socks. Also keep your legs covered.
- Alternately keep in mind that snakes are by nature shy and will at most times stay away from groups of people on safari.
- Keep your head and don’t panic even if you find yourself faced by one.
- Carry sunscreen
- Also take insect repellants.
- Avoid excessive exposure to the sun.
- In case of ticks, don’t try to brush it off. Instead use a cover or some lotion to suffocate it.
- The majority of Africans, irrespective of tribes and countries – are respectful towards foreigners.
- Though rare, the regions where xenophobia may be encountered are Eastern and Southern Africa.
- As long as you follow travel etiquette, you’ll be fine.
- Travel etiquette – Avoid outbursts, don’t be racist, don’t make hate speeches, be polite with all locals, and whatever you do, don’t criticize any government officials or locals!
Other traveling tips
- Never go out on the reserves alone.
- Stay away from areas that are afflicted with abject poverty, and do not venture alone.
- Don’t be flashy about your belongings, remember they are poor and crimes still happen.
- Use deposit boxes instead of leaving valuables in vehicles or at hotel rooms.
- Don’t go out at night.
- Interact with locals.
- Ask for help from them whenever you need.
- Keep abreast of the current affairs of any particular place, and beware of unrest.
- Don’t consider hitchhiking.
With these safety precautions taken care of, you needn’t worry about security anymore! Now just concentrate on enjoying yourself!